Let’s face it travel is stressful and sticking to your health goals often go straight out the window as soon as you enter the airport. Whether it’s a road trip or an international flight it can be difficult to maintain eating healthy and regular exercise when you’re spending countless hours waiting at the airport, sitting in a car or sightseeing. You don’t have access to your normal food, cooking facilities and finding a place to work out, well forget it! It’s so easy to get off track making poor food choices, cause I mean, it’s travel, it’s stressful (even on holiday)and there is so much temptation calling you. And get a working out in? How does that happen between all the fun things you are going to see and do, the early morning and late nights.
With a little proper pre-trip planning you can drastically reduce your travelling stress and create a plan or guideline to follow which will, in turn, allow you to make better choices. Like when you’re out to dinner and faced with the choice of a burger with cheesy chips instead of burger with no bun and a salad.
In addition to the plan, it’s also really important to realize that you won’t have your exact routine and your food may not be perfect. Allow yourself permission to not be perfect for the duration of the trip and that things might not be exactly the same. Allow yourself the freedom to do things differently and have fun on your vacation. This isn’t about being perfect it’s about finding a little bit of structure to help you keep in line with your goals.
Here are my top 5 my tips and tricks to help keep your next trip on track…
- Research your hotel – Ask lots of questions before you book your stay. Does it have a gym? If so, find out what type of equipment it has and create a workout plan accordingly. If not, is there a gym nearby that offers a discounted daily rate? Does it have a restaurant or breakfast that includes healthy offerings? Does it offer rooms with a refrigerator or better yet a small kitchen so you can make some of your own meals?
- Research the area – Check out the restaurants and cafes near your hotel and the local areas you’ll be visiting. Take some time to look at menus for healthy fare and even make a list of those that have options. That way when the question, “Where should we go for dinner ?” is asked, you can say, ” let s go check out <insert name here> restaurant, they have some awesome dishes.” and look like the hero. Also, look for local grocery stores or farmers markets especially if you have mini-fridge or kitchenette.
- Load up on non-perishable foods and snacks – Bring healthy bars like Nakd or Kind bars, beef jerky, single package nut butter, nuts and seeds. These will help if you find yourself needing a meal or quick snack and there is nothing healthy around – I find travelling in Europe this is really important because healthy, unprocessed snacks are very hard to find. Be sure you have enough to make it through your flight or car ride (plus a little extra in case of delayed), but depending on your destination you may want to bring enough for your entire trip.
- Limit alcohol – I know you’re on holiday and you want to have fun and have margarita or two by the pool but overdrinking alcohol is a sure-fire way to knock your health goals way off track. Not only will you consume a ton of calories but you will also more likely to make poor eating choices. I’m not saying don’t drink, but be mindful of what type of drink and how much you are consuming.
- Hydrate – make sure you stay hydrated by drinking plenty of water. Dehydration often happens when travelling, especially when travelling by aeroplane. Dehydration causes you to believe you need to eat when you really need liquid intake so it can cause you to overeat. Bring a refillable bottle – many airports and rest stops allow you to refill free of charge and you’re helping to save the planet too!